Welcome to our 21st century parking dilemma

HAMMERTIME

I listened, chuckled and agreed somewhat with a recent morning radio program where announcers and callers were having a very lively discussion about what they referred to as “parking jerks.”

Just about every family has least a vehicle or two these days, which makes it quite hectic out on the roads, and sometimes a nightmare to find a parking spot. Many members of the work or school force have resorted to taking the bus, carpooling, or even riding their bikes to their destinations every day — the latter certainly doesn’t work when its 30 degrees below and slippery.

The main subject of this radio show banter was mostly frustration against those individuals who choose to take up more than one parking spot, park at an angle, or way too close to the vehicle that they have just pulled in beside. Several callers politely insisted that those big long trucks, trailers and motorhomes should park out along the edge in the far corners of the lots, while others suggested that motorists must make sure that their kids or other passengers be careful not to open the doors far enough to nail the side of the vehicle next to them.

Unfortunately, there are no tickets or real rules for poor parking habits, and even if you park in designated stop and pay areas, there will still be culprits who disregard those bright yellow lines. One very irate lady stated that she had pulled into a busy parking lot where someone had brashly parked their fancy set of wheels across the top of three parking stalls, so she proceeded to park beside the offender to hopefully box them in or leave a dum-dum message. Another caller gets so angry at bad parking lot etiquette that she and her husband occasionally leave a message on the guilty vehicle explaining their ignorance. But do we really need this kind of parking lot “car wars” or are there other alternatives?

It is a fact that most of the lots where we have to pay are policed most of the time in case we forget to keep plugging the meter, so why can’t these attendants or businesses check once in a while for blatantly bad parking practices, then attach a congenial reminder that this will not be accepted? I don’t know how you feel but I believe that if we see someone do damage to someone’s vehicle then leave, we should write down their license number and report them, then try to notify the owner of the damaged vehicle if we can.

Other alternatives to the ongoing parking dilemma are to shop early in the morning just after the store opens when the lots are usually half empty, or park over at a far corner near the edge of the lot, which may be a long way from the shopping carts, but the exercise is good. Bottom line, a little courtesy and common sense usually works on most days!

Great ways of dealing with the burdens of life

• Accept that some days you are the pigeon, and some days we are the statue.

• Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case we have to eat them.

• Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time, because then you won’t have a leg to stand on.

• Nobody really cares if you can’t dance very well, just get up and dance.

• It may be that our sole purpose in life is simply to be kind to others.

• Never be afraid to celebrate birthdays, because the more we have, the longer we live.

Coming right from the heart

• A four-year-old child lived next door to a kindly and elderly gentleman who had just recently lost his wife. Upon seeing his neighbour crying, the little lad went into the old gent’s yard, climbed into his lap, and just sat there.

Later when his mother asked him what he had said to the neighbour, the little boy quietly replied, ‘Nothing, I just helped him cry.’

• Teacher Debbie Moon’s first graders were discussing a picture of a family. One little boy in the photo had a different hair colour than the other members, and one of the students suggested that he was adopted.

A little girl in the class explained, “I know all about adoption, because I was adopted.”

“What does it mean to be adopted?” another child asked. The little girl perked up and proudly replied, “It means that you grew up in your mommy’s heart instead of her tummy.”

• Then there was the man who solved the problem of too many visiting relatives by borrowing money from the rich ones and loaning it to the poor ones. Now, none of them come back.

Have a great week, all of you.